What does Apple iOS 7 mean for education?

What does Apple iOS 7 mean for education?

With iOS 7 out now, we thought we’d take a look at some of what we understand will be the benefits of using the new operating system for iPad, iPod and iPhone within your institution. As well as a new look design, free iWork apps and improved Find My iPhone feature, the latest version improves how your institution buys app licences and uses Apple IDs.

The iOS 7 update can be downloaded from your Settings, under General > Software Update, and is compatible with all current iPad 2, iPad with Retina display, iPad mini and iPod Touch 5th generation devices, as well as any iPhone 4 or later. These are the updated features that we think will be of most use to education institutions:

App licence ownership. This is now a much clearer and simpler process thanks to App Store licence management. Institutions can now ‘assign’ apps bought through the Volume Purchase Programme (VPP) store to a user and distribute those licences wirelessly using mobile device management software (such as Lightspeed or Casper). These licences can be revoked and re-assigned to other users.

Personal Apple IDs. Students and staff can now enrol with their personal Apple IDs without providing them to their institution, and apps purchased by the institution can be placed in their purchase history for self service download using App Store licence management. Alternatively, you could have your MDM solution automatically download for you. And don’t forget, this is now possible with textbooks (available on iBooks) too.

Automatic updates. Students and teachers no longer need to insert their Apple ID and password when updating software, saving time and simplifying the update process. iOS 7 will also ensure that updates run in the background at the best time possible to save battery life.

AirDrop. Students and teachers can now collaborate more easily with the ability to transfer files and ‘hand in’ school work wirelessly between devices, using AirDrop. Simply select AirDrop in the Control Centre (access this by swiping up on the iPad) and choose which device to transfer to. There’s no need to worry about security as transfers are highly encrypted. (N.B. AirDrop is not compatible with iPad 2).

Single Sign-on. Students and staff now have the ability to securely save a user credential (password and login) to iOS 7, and this secure credential can be used across multiple apps. So users no longer need to keep entering usernames and passwords. As long as the app is assigned to the credential, usernames and passwords are entered automatically and institutional resources can be accessed simply and securely.

Free Apple iWork apps. If you purchase a new device with iOS 7 installed, you will receive Pages, Keynote, Numbers, iMovie and iPhoto completely free of charge. That’s a saving of approximately £27 per device (or £13.50 per device if purchased through the education VPP store).

Find My iPhone. This security feature has now been improved to help make it even harder for anyone who’s not the rightful owner to use or sell the device. You can no longer erase the device without the right Apple ID and password and, even if the device is erased, it will still require your Apple ID and password to reactivate it. So your institution’s device will always remain your institution’s device.

Apple TV. When teaching with iPad, an Apple TV attached to the projector makes it possible to present on the whiteboard wirelessly. An Apple TV for the classroom is ideal, and fortunately they are now even easier to set up as they can also be enrolled into you MDM software, making deployment of the devices simple and automated. WiFi settings can be set and pass codes provided so you don’t have to manually enter all of this information using the Apple TV remote. Find out more about using Apple TV with iPad for presentation here.

Want to know more about Apple iPad for the classroom? Get in touch with the team on 03332 409 333, email learning@Jigsaw24.com, follow @Jigsaw24Edu on Twitter or ‘Like’ our Jigsaw24 Education Facebook page for all the latest technology in education news, reviews and articles.

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Using Apple TV, iPad and interactive touchscreens

Using Apple TV, iPad and interactive touchscreens

Are you thinking of replacing your ageing interactive whiteboards? Before you reinvest, it might be worth taking a look at the combination of Apple TV, iPad and a few well-chosen apps, or an interactive touchscreen, as a replacement for, or to work alongside, your existing display solution. 

In this quick guide, we’ve taken a look at some of the factors you might want to take into consideration before you make a new purchase. The first thing you really need to think about is: how are you currently using your presentation systems?

Are you able to easily use the interactive features of your existing equipment to enhance teaching and learning? It sometimes takes a lot of training and practice to get the full benefit of some systems, so perhaps there’s a solution that might be better suited to your teaching style, and the needs of your students. You need something that’s easy to use, cost-effective and will make sure both staff and pupils are getting the greatest educational benefit from the technology.

To get you started, we’ve looked into the teaching benefits of using Apple TV with iPad, as well as those offered by traditional interactive whiteboards, and broken down the key things to consider when looking at presentation systems. These include content, interactivity, accessibility, collaboration and, most importantly, cost.

The hardware on offer

We’ve been working with hundreds of schools recently to implement iPad and Apple TV deployments, and are really starting to see the benefits of the workflow on offer. But what actually is Apple TV? This isn’t a screen, as the name may suggest, but a tiny box that can plug into any display or projector, allowing you to wirelessly mirror the display and audio output of any iPad in the classroom. This will allow the teacher and students to model any activities and projects on the iPad to the rest of the class and present content such as video, images and presentations. And since the introduction of the Mountain Lion operating system you can also mirror the screen and audio of any Mac in the classroom as well.

Apple TV connects directly to any display or projector with an HDMI socket, or to a VGA projector using a simple adaptor. And once an Apple TV is present in the classroom, nothing further is required on the iPad or Mac – Apple’s AirPlay technology makes it easy to connect over WiFi.

Then you have interactive touchscreens, which function like huge iPad devices and can work in conjunction with Apple TV for wireless mirroring. One model that we do like is the C-TOUCH Leddura board – a huge 65″ whiteboard with HD visuals and multitouch control that’s great for interactivity and looks impressive, and retails for around £3300. Ultimately it’s what level of interactivity you need, and how you want to teach, that will determine whether a whiteboard is the right option for you, or Apple TV with iPad.

Presentation benefits

Apple TV doesn’t require any kind of computer to connect and, because you can project wirelessly from any iPad (or Mac), teachers can move freely around the class, and away from the Victorian ‘chalk and talk’ model of being stuck at the front of the room giving a presentation. That means they can work with individual pupils and groups, while also giving pupils the chance to project to the screen at the front from their desk. This is a great way for pupils to present work in plenary exercises, and for peer assessment, encouraging those with less confidence to present their work without having to stand in front of the class

And here’s another idea you might try – the wireless connectivity also makes Apple TV a great solution for streaming content like school announcements to screens in the school hall or entrance lobby. Assembly halls with projectors no longer need a cumbersome computer to display digital content – simply connect an Apple TV to the projector and use an iPad for all your presenting needs.

On a side note, there’s not a lot of point going down the Apple TV and iPad deployment route if your projected image is poor. While an interactive touchscreen like the C-TOUCH will present your content in crisp, sharp HD, if you’d prefer to go down the projector route, or don’t have the budget to stretch to an interactive touchscreen, we can provide brand new projectors to give your images a boost.

Getting interactive

One benefit of an Apple TV setup over a traditional whiteboard is the greater level of interaction you can have with content. Instead of interacting with the board, students interact with the iPad as a handheld control surface, giving a greater range of functionality than that offered by an interactive whiteboard. There’s a wide range of apps available for iPad that duplicate or enhance the interactive features of existing technologies too – such as apps that allow students to annotate content in real time, as a way of evidencing their learning.

Other apps give the teacher ways of controlling presentations from their own iPad, and have it show up on pupils’ devices from anywhere, so everyone is seeing the same thing at the same time, along with interactive features such as quizzes and surveys. An important point to remember is once students begin to have devices of their own they too can have the same apps that drive the display systems and start to create their own digital content to support teaching and learning outcomes.

Creating content

You’ve probably already got a huge wealth of staff-created content and legacy resources, often put together over many years, so it is great to know that many file types such as Powerpoint .ppts can be opened, edited and presented from iPad, and you can continue to use these resources. An app like Explain Everything automatically turns an existing Powerpoint slideshow into an interactive resource that can be annotated and recorded in real time.

All existing SMART and Promethean lesson plans can also be used on new interactive touchscreens too. And the chance to create new materials, and moving away from the legacy software means you’re not tied down to using the content just on existing interactive whiteboards, freeing both teacher and students to work and interact anywhere.

Considering cost

The real crux of the decision on new technology for schools is usually cost. An Apple TV will only set you back £79.50 ex VAT per unit, with iPad devices starting from as little as £209.50 ex VAT each. If you need to use Apple TV with an existing VGA projector, you will also need a Kanex ATV Pro adaptor to connect the two, which sells for £35 ex VAT.

Want to know more about Apple iPad for the classroom? Get in touch with the team on 03332 409 333, email learning@Jigsaw24.com, follow @Jigsaw24Edu on Twitter or ‘Like’ our Jigsaw24 Education Facebook page for all the latest technology in education news, reviews and articles.


 

Education app of the week: Hairy Maclary from Donaldson’s Dairy for iPad

Education app of the week: Hairy Maclary from Donaldson’s Dairy for iPad

Based on the ever popular children’s book, Hairy Maclary from Donaldson’s Dairy for iPad is an app version of the little black dog’s tales. As well as a fantastic story, it’s perfect for promoting literacy skills. 

What is Hairy Maclary from Donaldson’s Dairy for iPad?

Hairy Maclary from Donaldson’s Dairy (Penguin New Zealand Pty Ltd, £2.99) is an interactive version of the children’s book, or QBook. It lets pupils read along with the story by either tapping each individual word, or running their finger along text to form sentences, paint directly onto pages and record their own voice. The book retains the same charm of author Lynley Dodd’s writing rhythm and watercolour canine hero, which is all enlivened by David Tennant’s thespian narration.
Hairy Maclary app for iPad

Hairy Maclary app for iPad

How can it benefit the classroom?

Hairy Maclary is a perfect aid for early learning and literacy development. Pupils can start by playing the story and reading along with the narration then, when confident enough, can record their own. Touching individual words teaches how they are supposed to be spoken and spelt.

What’s the most useful feature?

A great book for guided reading, the main thing we love about Hairy Maclary is how it can aid literacy skills in a fun way. The addition of painting tools adds to the engaging story, as pupils can draw along on each page with a colour palette and a number of different paint brushes. Handily, there are even videos which include sign language too.

Where can I get it?

Hairy Maclary from Donaldson’s Dairy (Penguin New Zealand Pty Ltd, £2.99) is available from the App Store on your iPad, or from iTunes. It’s also available under Apple’s Volume Purchase Programme, meaning you can get it for £1.49 per app when you bulk buy more than 20 instances.

– Missed last week’s app? Catch up on our review of Hopscotch for iPad here.

Want to know more about our favourite apps and Apple iPad for the classroom? Get in touch with the team on 03332 409 333, email learning@Jigsaw24.com, follow @Jigsaw24Edu on Twitter or ‘Like’ our Jigsaw24 Education Facebook page for all the latest technology in education news, reviews and articles.

Education app of the week: Hopscotch for iPad

Education app of the week: Hopscotch for iPad

With programming in the classroom on the up, our education team have seen schools going coding crazy. And one tool we’ve seen making an impact is Hopscotch, a really intuitive iPad app that teaches the programming basics to young coders.

What is Hopscotch for iPad?

Hopscotch (Hopscotch Technologies, free) is a free iPad app that’s great for helping pupils learn the fundamentals of programming. Using a simple drag and drop method, you move pre-made blocks and objects to build a complete program. This completed script then lets you run animations or simple games. It’s based on the popular visual programming language Scratch, which was created at MIT in 2006 (read more about Scratch here).

Hopscotch for iPad

Hopscotch for iPad

How can it benefit the classroom?

Using a simple interface, Hopscotch will appeal to young coders at every key stage, and give them a taste of the kind of programming skills they might want to take further. With an emphasis on coding and programming in ICT, Hopscotch is an easy way in for both learners and teachers.

What’s the best feature?

The greatest thing about Hopscotch has to be the friendly design and ease of use. Pupils pick from one of a range of cool characters (we can’t choose a favourite between the monkey and the ice cream), and then it’s just a case of dragging and dropping commands into line to create animations and games.

Where can I get it?

Hopscotch (Hopscotch Technologies, free) is available from the App Store on your iPad or from iTunes. Best of all, it’s completely free.

– Missed last week’s app? Check out our review of Bee-Bot for iPad here.

Want to know more about our favourite apps and Apple iPad for the classroom? Get in touch with the team on 03332 409 333, email learning@Jigsaw24.com, follow @Jigsaw24Edu on Twitter or ‘Like’ our Jigsaw24 Education Facebook page for all the latest technology in education news, reviews and articles.


 

Education app of the week: Bee-Bot for iPad

Education app of the week: Bee-Bot for iPad

Want an easy way in to programming in the classroom? Bee-Bot for iPad is the iOS app version of the very popular Bee-Bot floor robot, and helps instil basic programming skills in young learners. Here’s why it’s been creating a buzz (sorry) around the education team…

What is Bee-Bot for iPad?

The original Bee-Bot is a classroom-friendly floor robot, and Bee-Bot for iPad (TTS Group, free) is the app version of that. Using the same keypad functionality of the hardware version, the aim is for pupils to solve various challenges by programming a cartoon bee to move around different levels through sequences of forwards, backwards, left and right 90 degree turns. Whereas the physical Bee-Bot requires actual floor space, the Bee-Bot app lets pupils work either individually or in a group on iPad, so it’s great for classrooms where space is an issue.

Bee-Bot for iPad

Bee-Bot for iPad

How can it benefit the classroom?

Bee-Bot enables students to improve their skills in directional language and programming through sequences of movement. With programming becoming an increasingly important part of the curriculum, enhancing these skills in pupils at an early age is a good idea. And the engaging, cartoon-like visuals and interface of the Bee-Bot app makes that an easy win for KS1 and KS2 learners.

What’s the best feature?

The best bit about Bee-Bot is the fact there’s an array of different challenges on offer. Each level (of which there are currently 12) encourages progression by setting tougher challenges and more complex solutions. With the floor robot, you would need to invest in different activity mats (or create your own challenges) to offer different levels.

Where can I get it?

Bee-Bot for iPad is completely free, and available for iPad (and iPhone too) from either the App Store or iTunes.

– Missed last week’s app? You can catch up with our review of colAR Mix for iPad here.

Want to know more about our favourite apps and Apple iPad for the classroom? Get in touch with the team on 03332 409 333, email learning@Jigsaw24.com, follow @Jigsaw24Edu on Twitter or ‘Like’ our Jigsaw24 Education Facebook page for all the latest technology in education news, reviews and articles.


 

Education app of the week: colAR Mix for iPad

Education app of the week: colAR Mix for iPad

This week’s app, colAR Mix for iPad, allows students to colour in a flat design, then bring it to life using augmented reality on their iPad. We’ve explained just why we love it below, but this really is one app that needs to be seen to be appreciated! 

What is colAR Mix for iPad?

colAR Mix (Puteko Limited, free) is an iPad app that uses augmented reality – computer-generated 3D modelling in real world environments (that’s where the AR in colAR comes from!) – with a difference. Whereas AR has only really had much of a take-up by companies to promote products using 3D visualisations so far, colAR Mix lets you actually engage and get creative with models. Pick one of the pre-drawn 2D templates created by the developer, colour it in either on paper or digitally on your computer screen, then just point the iPad camera at your finished design in the app and colAR Mix wraps your flat design around a 3D wireframe to trigger an animation, complete with your colourful scribblings. Kids will think it’s magic!

colAR Mix for iPad

colAR Mix for iPad

How can it benefit the classroom?

I’ve used colAR Mix with a few different classes now, but one of the best uses is probably to engage pupils in art and design. For example, I used the shoe template to get pupils to design their own trainers then watch as they popped into 3D, which is a great project for key stage 3 Design Technology/Art. Another use could be for digital storytelling. The dragon page is particularly impressive, and could be the basis for coming up with stories for younger pupils.

What’s the most useful feature?

What’s particularly useful for evidencing pupils’ projects is that they can take a screenshot of their 3D design on iPad, then import it into a another app such as iMovie or Educreations to create slide shows, add annotations and more.

Where can I get it?

colAR Mix (Puteko Limited, free) is available for free in iPad’s App Store or via iTunes. Extra page templates are available as an in-app purchase for £1.99.

– Want to catch up on last week’s app? Check out our review of Codea for iPad here.

Want to know more about our favourite apps and Apple iPad for the classroom? Get in touch with the team on 03332 409 333, email learning@Jigsaw24.com, follow @Jigsaw24Edu on Twitter or ‘Like’ our Jigsaw24 Education Facebook page for all the latest technology in education news, reviews and articles.

e7 news: Apple add new rules on iOS apps for children

e7 news: Apple add new rules on iOS apps for children

Apple have added a new section to their iOS developer guidelines covering iPad, iPod and iPhone apps intended for under 13s. Ahead of a new ‘Kids Apps’ category in the App Store, apps aimed at children must now include a privacy policy, parental permission for in-app purchases and outbound links, and must not use behavioral advertising. 

With recent news stories about children racking up iTunes bills purchasing in-app extras in popular games and apps, and with an upcoming report on children’s apps by the Office of Fair Trading, it looked likely that Apple would soon review their iOS developer guidelines. Especially with under 13s being able to create their own individual iTunes accounts (at the request of an educational institution) from iOS 7 onwards.

Apple’s new guidelines for children’s apps cover:

“24.1. Apps primarily intended for use by kids under 13 must include a privacy policy.

24.2. Apps primarily intended for use by kids under 13 may not include behavioral advertising (e.g. the advertiser may not serve ads based on the user’s activity within the App), and any contextual ads presented in the App must be appropriate for kids.

24.3. Apps primarily intended for use by kids under 13 must get parental permission or use a parental gate before allowing the user to link out of the app or engage in commerce.

24.4. Apps in the Kids Category must be made specifically for kids ages 5 and under, ages 6-8, or ages 9-11.”

Want to know more about Apple iPad for education? Call us on 03332 409 333 or email learning@Jigsaw24.com. To keep up to date with what our e7 team are up to, follow @Jigsaw24Edu on Twitter or ‘Like’ our Jigsaw24 Education Facebook page

Education app of the week: Codea for iPad

Education app of the week: Codea for iPad

With coding and programming being current curriculum watchwords, we’ve seen plenty of schools starting to integrate those skills into ICT. So this week we thought we’d look at one of the most popular coding apps we’ve come across – iCodea for iPad.

What is iCodea for iPad?

Codea (Two Lives Left, £6.99) is an iPad app that lets students create games and simulations directly on iPad using the Lua programming language (this is based on Python, an easy to use language that typically uses fewer lines of code). It really takes advantage of the features of iOS, allowing you to use multi-touch gestures and the inbuilt accelerometer within your program, simply dragging and dropping code around. Letting students both write and run their own programs within the app, iCodea is ideal for KS3 and KS4 syllabuses.

How can it benefit the classroom?

Where Two Lives Left’s other programming app Cargo-Bot (which we’ve reviewed here) gives students a taste of the processes needed in order to code, Codea actually lets them start playing around and writing their own code. It’s far easier to use than programming languages like C++, and the cute visuals and bright interface are really engaging, so it’s an ideal way to get students modelling situations and solving problems, exploring ideas and trying alternatives.

Codea app for iPad

Codea app for iPad

What’s the best feature?

One of the most useful features is how you can simply  tap on parts of the code to bring up visual editors for sprites (images) and colour changes, This lets students really get hands on and interact with their code, giving a better understanding and engagement of how changing the program changes outcomes.

Where can I get it?

Codea (Two Lives Left, £6.99) is available from the App Store on iOS or from iTunes. Because it’s available under Apple’s Volume Purchase Programme, you can get discounts of 50% when buying the app in bulk volumes of more than 20, bringing the price down to £3.49.

– Missed last week’s app? Catch up with our review of iDoceo for iPad here.

Want to know more about our favourite apps and Apple iPad for the classroom? Get in touch with the team on 03332 409 333, email learning@Jigsaw24.com, follow @Jigsaw24Edu on Twitter or ‘Like’ our Jigsaw24 Education Facebook page for all the latest technology in education news, reviews and articles.

 

Education app of the week: iDoceo for iPad

Education app of the week: iDoceo for iPad

Ditch the spreadsheets and binders full of pencilling – iDoceo for iPad is an electronic grade book that lets you keep track of all your pupils’ grades and even add attachments to each of them. We’ve been getting rave reviews about it from schools like Pleckgate High, and here’s why we love it. 

What is iDoceo?

iDoceo (Bert Sanchis, £3.99) is an electronic grade book for iPad that lets teachers track pupil progress. You can also add statistical data along with files, images and video evidence, create seating plans for classes, and make planners which can sync up with your iOS Calendar. It’s really easy to adapt and customise the column view of each class so you can assess how your pupils have been getting on over a term or a year. No internet connection is required, and you even have the ability to upload data back into SIMS (School Information Management Systems).

iDoceo for iPad

iDoceo for iPad

How can it benefit the classroom?

This is an app that’s very much just for teachers, but it’s a very useful one to have, and one we think could easily replace all the usual methods you have of charting pupil progress. What sets it apart from a simple spreadsheet is that, as well as adding statistical data for each pupil, you can also attach files, images and video evidence, making it easy to see how your pupils have been getting on at a glance. It’s also far easier to manage, as you can do everything in-app, rather than having multiple spreadsheets (or papers) to deal with.

What’s the best feature?

One of the best features of iDoceo is that you can create seating plans for classes, and even add configurable views and backgrounds. You can have up to as many as five seating plans per class, which really helps quickly look up pupils, and also see if seating arrangements are having an effect on attainment.

Where can I get it?

You can get iDoceo (Bert Sanchis, £3.99) by heading to the App Store on your iPad, or downloading it from iTunes.

– Missed one of our app reviews? Catch up with last week’s here, HeartDecide for iPad.

Want to know more about our favourite apps and Apple iPad for the classroom? Get in touch with the team on 03332 409 333, email learning@Jigsaw24.com, follow @Jigsaw24Edu on Twitter or ‘Like’ our Jigsaw24 Education Facebook page for all the latest technology in education news, reviews and articles.

 

Education app of the week: HeartDecide for iPad

Education app of the week: HeartDecide for iPad

Pupils don’t know much biology? With the HeartDecide app, you can get them to engage with the subject digitally, dissecting and learning from an interactive 3D heart. Anatomically correct and full of supporting information, it’s a sight easier and less messy than a trip to the butcher’s!

What is HeartDecide?

The HeartDecide app (ORCA MD, free) is foremostly a 3D model which you can rotate and section to explore the various atriums and ventricles of the human heart. On top of that, it also includes detailed information about health conditions surrounding the heart, including symptoms and recommendations for treatment based on best practices. As it’s ‘Powered by Harvard Medical School’, you can expect these to be in-depth and up-to-date, so your pupils will soon be reeling off terms like valvuloplasty and mitral regurgitation as if they were Dr Doug Ross.

HeartDecide for iPad

How can it benefit the classroom?

HeartDecide is obviously going to be perfect for biology, and the breadth of information on offer means it can be used as in introduction to pupils who might not have even seen what the inside of a heart looks like before, right up to being a useful revision tool for GCSE students. The fact that it’s completely free doesn’t hurt either.

What’s the best feature?

We really like how there’s the possibility of taking the information from HeartDecide to use later. The 3D visuals are crying out to be screen grabbed, allowing student notations or verbal explanations to be added later, when combined with a presentation app like Educreations or ShowMe.

Where can I get it?

HeartDecide (ORCA MD) is free, and available to download for iPad directly from the App Store, or through iTunes. If you feel like taking it a bit further, ORCA MD also publish detailed apps for other body parts, such as EyeDecide and SpineDecide.

– Missed last week’s app of the week? Catch up with our review of Timeline Eons here.

Want to know more about our favourite apps and Apple iPad for the classroom? Get in touch with the team on 03332 409 333, email learning@Jigsaw24.com, follow @Jigsaw24Edu on Twitter or ‘Like’ our Jigsaw24 Education Facebook page for all the latest technology in education news, reviews and articles.